Memento Mori – Everything Must Die
Watching tulips die has taught me a great deal about the beauty of growing older, about how they are far more interesting when they are knarled and bent and glorious in their final days.
Much of my work recently has been a reaction to turning 50 and the menopause and these tulips are instructive the way they transform so beautifully as they approach death. Yes, everything must die, memento mori, but to be reminded of this allows us to really live.
I love watching tulips age, – what a metaphor they are for growing older and seeing beauty where many might only see decay.
At first the flowers were upright and prim and proper and within a couple of days they had relaxed, swooped and let it all hang out. Just like when we gain the self awareness of what’s important and not to worry about what other people think so much!
When the tulips are two weeks old and definitely at the end of life, I find them more beautiful than ever before. They have dropped petals to reveal the secrets within, their colours have deepened and become so varied and rich and their stalks, although bent and curved, are far more fascinating than before.
Click on the pictures for a larger version.